Meet Dawn

2021 TEDx Jacksonville Speaker
Prosci® Certified Change Management Practitioner
Certified Mental Health First Aid

Dr. Dawn Emerick is a trailblazer, a leading voice and a thought leader on trauma-informed leadership. She is a keynote speaker, a certified Mental Health First Aid instructor,  coach and now add TEDx Jacksonville  speaker to her portfolio.


Why work with Dr. Emerick? There is nothing more powerful than learning from and sharing space with people with lived, learned and recovery experiences, self-awareness, and professional application. Dr. Dawn Emerick confronted her childhood and adult trauma after witnessing how her own unresolved trauma was affecting the way she engaged her children, family, friends, peers, co-workers and teams- especially when her childhood trauma collided with a bully boss who orchestrated a very personal [and legal] character assassination for all of the world to see. The combination of Dawn’s childhood and adult trauma, healing, astute self-awareness, her 30 years of non-profit, county/city government executive leadership experience and stories from the field, creates the ultimate story learning, coaching and mentoring environment.

Dr. Emerick is motivated as hell to start a new leadership paradigm today, right now. A paradigm that starts with creating 1M Trauma-Informed Leaders in America by 2031.

Over a span of 30 years, she crafted her passion for maternal and child health, doula support, early childhood brain development, leadership, organizational development and engagement skills at various private, government, and non-profit organizations in Florida, Minnesota, Washington, Oregon and Texas. She is former non-profit CEO and county/city government executive who has successfully planned, managed and executed several enterprise-wide, complex organizational restructuring efforts using organizational design and change management theory, employee engagement, and qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis. Her leadership and change management approach have produced [sustained] increases in employee morale by up to 10% and company revenue by 17%.

Her real experiences coupled with evidence-based, Trauma-Informed Leadership & Change Management framework has attracted interest from human resource professionals, trauma-informed training organizations, change management associations, consultants, and national conferences all across the United States.


Dr. Emerick is the host of Leadership Uncensored podcast, a national speaker on organizational design and change management, and a proven transformational leader who will work in partnership with you and your team to find innovative solutions to problems, placing people at the center of the process. She lends her expertise to the Jacksonville Civic Council as their Senior Director for Public Policy Research.

Originally from the DC / Maryland metropolitan area, she graduated from Frostburg State University with a degree in Health Education. Dawn is a two-time alumnus of the University of North Florida where she received her Masters in Public Administration and her Doctor of Education Leadership. In 2018, she was accepted into the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Population Health Management graduate program. Dr. Emerick became a Prosci® Certified Change Management Practitioner in February of 2021.

Dawn is a member of the Association of Change Management ProfessionalsAssociation of Consultants for Non-ProfitsInternational City/County Managers Association and Engaging Local Government Leaders.